Custom Wetsuits and You
Custom wetsuits are a great idea for those of us who expect the very best from our surf equipment. Surfers whose body type doesn’t match the typical professional surfer measurements of 5’9” 160 lbs may also find a custom wetsuit to be the very best option. The ultimate result is a suit made to fit you perfectly that will offer the very best in warmth, comfort, and functionality.
Japanese based manufacturer Axxe Wetsuits has been in business for 35 years and produces custom wetsuits exclusively. They take such great pride in their wetsuits and believe in the quality of a custom fit that they never offer them off the rack.
“These wetsuits are 100% handmade by a craftsman in Japan. They’re really light and really warm,” says Axxe representative Eric Koike. “We measure 28 different parts of the body and put a lot of passion and soul into each and every wetsuit that comes out of our factory. Japan is notorious for being very particular about every detail. That’s what we’re all about.
“When someone wears a wetsuit that is too small for their dimensions it puts stress on the wetsuit’s seams. A custom wetsuit will help you avoid this premature wear and last longer as a result. Another thing to think about is the amount of stretch you’re asking of the material. If someone with extra broad shoulders or a big round belly is squeezing himself into a 3 ml wetsuit, it’s really not a 3 mm in those places. It becomes a 2 mm or even 1 mm due to the stretch. Our custom wetsuits offer an even distribution of thickness for maximum warmth.”
Harry Yearwood of Peru based Boz Wetsuits had a slightly different interpretation of who should buy a Boz custom wetsuit.
“We have a size chart with 11 different sizes and we use 100% superstretch material,” explains Yearwood. “One of those sizes will fit most people very, very well. I recommend a custom wetsuit only if you’re really tall and very skinny or if you are on the shorter, heavier side. You may also want to consider it if you have an unusually large neck or broad shoulders.
“A wetsuit worn too tight will stretch the material too hard, wearing it quicker than usual. You want it snug to keep warm, but not too stretched out. I get a lot of requests from people who want a custom wetsuit when really one of our sizes will work perfectly.”
Because both Axxe and Boz use an order form with over 20 different measurements it’s best to be as accurate as possible.
“Don’t go to a tailor to get measured,” suggests Koike. “That has happened before and it’s been difficult to work with their measurements. I recommend going to a shop taking Axxe Wetsuit orders and talking to the designated shop employee. That’s the best way to go.”
A custom wetsuit order may be the right move for your next suit. You will get a wetsuit perfectly fitted for your body, keeping you nice and warm while also putting less stress on the seams and materials. They tend to be more expensive, but the added comfort and warmth may be worth the cost. Still, a custom wetsuit may really be a big benefit only for those people with unusual body shapes. Whatever you decide, SurfScience.com has now armed you with the information you need to make this decision on your own.